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Europe 15, Britain 13, Miliband 5, Northern Ireland 5, Us 4, European Union 4, United Kingdom 4, Mike 2, Kingsman David Robert Shaw 2, Afghanistan 2, Liverpool 1, Mr. Speaker 1, David Cameron 1, Elizabeth 1, Union 1, Westminster 1, Uni Union 1, Ireland 1, Caplan Barwell 1, Cbi 1,
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  CSPAN    International Programming    Series/Special.  

    January 23, 2013
    7:00 - 7:29am EST  

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>> now to london for prime minister's question time live from the british house of commons. every wednesday while parliament is in session prime minister david cameron takes questions from members of the house of commons. prior to questions on the house is wrapping up other business. this is live coverage on c-span2. >> could my honorable friend tell the house the impact on lowering corporation tax remain as of the eurozone and what effect that is having on investment in northern ireland? >> mr. speaker, there is ongoing negotiations for for the possible reductions of corporation tax in northern ireland but one of the biggest things is the northern ireland assembly can do it and the uk ministers can do is to bring people to northern ireland to see the great success story that has taken place there. only last week the seven leading japanese businesses in the uk
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came to northern ireland and were enormously impressed at the movement and progress we've made in northern ireland. >> border. question for the prime minister. >> question number one, mr. speaker. >> thank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, mr. speaker, before answering the honorable gentleman's question onto the whole house will wish to join in paying tribute to kingsman david robert shaw, first battalion duke of lancaster's regiment. he died in the queen elizabeth hospital birmingham last wednesday as result of wounds he sustained in afghanistan. he gave his life for the safety of the british people and is incredibly brave contribution must never be forgotten. our condolences are with his loved ones. mr. speaker, this morning i had meetings with ministerial colleagues and others, and in addition to my duties in the south i shall have further such meetings later today. >> i'm sure the whole house and the whole country would want to
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-- associate of those with the prime minister's comments. on monday, mr. speaker, the prime minister stated that the task for our generation was the struggle against terrorism. on tuesday, his government sacked 5600 troops. why is it, is this such kept into what the prime minister said and what the prime minister does? >> i think the honorable gentleman as an important question and i do not deny for one second that we've had to take difficult decisions about defense spending in our country. but let me make this point. at 33 billion pounds a year we have the fourth largest defense budget anywhere in the world, and i think it is her important that we make sure we have the right scale and shape of our forces and they have the right capabilities. that is what in the defense review we are investing in drones, special forces, investing more in key and intelligence capabilities making
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sure that we also have the aircraft we need to make sure we have highly mobile armed forces. i am incredibly proud of what our armed forces do, and because we are balancing their budgets to will be better equipped for the future. >> sixty-eight years ago this sunday than not see concentration and extermination camps auschwitz was liberated. as we mark holocaust memorial day, will the prime minister commit to ensuring that young people in this country always have the opportunity to learn about what took place during the darkest periods in our shared history? will the commend the work of the holocaust educational trust? >> i think my honorable friend speaks for the whole house and a developed country and raising his find -- final issue and praising the holocaust education trust. absolutely brilliant organization that make sure young people from schools across our country get the opportunity to go and see the places where the terrible events of the holocaust took place.
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i had privileges we could meeting with a survivor whose story was truly heroic and truly heartbreaking. but who in her 90s is still making these arguments in making this case so that future generations will and. we should also learn not just about the european holocaust but what has happened recently in rwanda, in bosnia, in cambodia and elsewhere that tragically there is far too much prejudice in our world. >> ed miliband. [shouting] >> mr. speaker, can i join the prime minister in thing to be to kingsman david robert shaw of first battalion the duke of lancaster's regiment. each of the utmost courage and bravery and the condolences of the whole house go to his family and friends. >> here, here. >> can the prime minister guaranteed if he gets his in out referendum he will be campaigning to stay in? >> yes, i want britain to be
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part of a reformed and successful european union. this argument, this entire argument is about what is in the national interest of britain. [shouting] we want a european union that is more open, more flexible, more competitive, not just good for britain but good for europe, to. >> i don't think that was quite a complete answer to my question, mr. speaker. let's see if we can press them a bit further about how he is going to vote. is he saying, is he saying that if he doesn't achieve his negotiating strategy he will recommend a part-time cancer -- the part-time chancellor can't hang on for a minute. is he saying if he doesn't achieve his negotiation strategy he will recommend britain lead the european union? >> first of all is very welcome, it's accepting the premise the conservatives will win the next election. [cheers and applause] >> and interestingly, an
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interest in not raising the fact the unemployment figures are down once again today. employment is up why 90,000 this quarter, and the rate of job growth last year was the fastest since 1989. but i answered his question very clearly. i want to see a strong britain in a reformed europe. we have a very clear plan. we want to reset the relationship. we will hold of that referendum that we were recommend that we settlement to the british people. the question now is for him. has he got a clue what he would do? >> ed miliband. >> mr. speaker, mr. speaker, he -- [shouting] the clues in the title prime minister's question, he is supposed to be answering the questions. [shouting] he has had six months, you said six months to think about this. it's not too much to ask. the right honorable member who
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is not your would say unequivocally that he would vote yes in a referendum. the children secretary who is hiding away down there, he has briefed he wants us to leave the european union. i am just asking the prime minister a straight question. in the referendum, can you guarantee actual vote yes in our referenda in? >> yes, i support britain's membership of a reformed european union. you don't only, only the leader of the opposition, would go into negotiation expecting to fail. we go into negotiation knowing what's best for britain. but let me put it to him again. we now have a very clear approach, renegotiation and then our referenda. what is his answer? let me tell him. he's meant to lead the opposition and you can't fight something with nothing. >> mr. speaker, i say first of all the reason the people are behind them are cheering is because not because they want to
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vote yes in out referendum. it's because they want to vote no. that is the reality for the prime minister. now look, he still hasn't answered the question. he still hasn't answered the question. [shouting] let's put it another way and give him another chance. we know from his speech this morning that he wants to go off and negotiate the fairness and flexibility and a motherhood and apple pie in europe. can he name one thing, just one thing, that if he doesn't get he will recommend leaving the european union? >> i don't want britain to leave the european union. i want britain to reform the european union. we have set out the whole areas where we want to go speak members are shedding their heads off. they must desist. let's hear the answers. the prime minister spin we've been very clear about what we want to see changed. their whole series of areas social and legislation,
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employment legislation, environmental legislation we're europe has gone far too far. we need to properly safeguard the single market. we also want to make sure that ever close the union doesn't apply to the united kingdom. these are the things that we are fighting for. let me put it to him again. we want a renegotiation and then out referendum. what does he want? what doesn't he know? >> ed miliband. >> so, mr. speaker, four hours since the big speech, he can't answer the most basic question of all. whether he is for yes, whether he is for yes or whether he is for no. and why can he answer, mr. speaker? why can't he say unequivocally that he will vote yes in a referendum? because he is frightened because of the people behind him. and the only thing that's changed is a few months ago when he said he was against and in out referendum is not the situation in europe, but a
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situation in the tory party. why doesn't he admit this? he is being driven to it not by the national interest but being dragged to it by his party. [shouting] >> the most basic question of all is the one of referendum? i do. does he? >> ed miliband. >> no, we don't want and in out referendum. [shouting] >> my position is precisely the same as his position when we voted together, yeah, when we voted together, we voted together in october 2011 against and in out referendum. my position hasn't changed. it's his position that is change, mr. speaker. and here is the truth. six months of planning a speech on of referendum come he can't even tell us whether it's a yes or a no. spent order. i apologize that i said a moment ago members shouldn't shout their heads off for prime
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minister. neither should member shot their heads off for the leader of the opposition. they must -- order. these questions must and they will be heard. mr. ed miliband. >> mr. speaker, he's going to put britain three years of uncertainty and take a huge gamble with our economy. he is running scared. is given into his party and he can't deliver for britain and. i have politely to say to the right honorable gentleman, his whole argument about there being uncertainty is undermined by the fact that he cannot answer whether he wants a referendum or not. can i give him a little bit of advice? he needs to go away, get the policy, come back and tell us what it is. meantime, our approach is what the british people want. it's right for business. it's right for our economy, and we will fight for it in the years ahead. >> mr. caplan barwell.
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>> mr. speaker, around the world 170 million people, children under the age of five are so malnourished it has affected the physical and possibly their cognitive development. the world has enough feared for it when. we must launch a major paint against malnutrition for children. >> my honorable friend is not so the right to raise this issue, particularly as we share the g8 this year and because some of the leading ngos like save the children have quite rightly launched this campaign today. above all what britain will be doing is meeting the commitment we made to not -- -- a commitment that we made that we kept wes many of the countries have broken their promises. we will be using that money to make sure we focus on issues of
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malnutrition, undernutrition and stunting. it is not acceptable in 2013 there are so many millions of families in the world that go hungry every day and every nig night. >> mr. speaker, the british automotive industry is a well classed success story. 82% of the cars we produce we export. key is inward investment indeed inward investment is continuing membership of the european uni union. has the prime minister heard the growing voices of concern being expressed within the industry over the prolonged uncertainty these will create? and does he began to recognize the damage he might do to our economy and a sector employment hundreds of thousands of british workers? >> first of all let me say that i agree with the honorable gentleman that it's very welcome that for the first time since the 1970s britain is once again under this government a net exporter of cars. that is something to celebrate. i so we don't agree with him
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about what he says about business. this morning, you see, the institute of directors, the director general of the cbi, the chamber of commerce, the federation of small businesses all coming out and sing this is the right approach, let's get a good deal for britain. let's reform europe and make a more open and competitive and let's put the choice to the british people in a referendum. >> duncan haynes spent i welcome his answer for ending hunger. that he recognizes the importance of the root causes of hunger, the land grab, the use of land for fire fuel and the, make sure investment in these countries is transparent? will he use the g8 for these causes? causes? >> i think much on your friend is right to races and i think because britain is meeting its promise, its promises in terms of the money for aid, we are best placed to make the argument about what i called the golden thread that are all the things that help move countries from poverty to wealth to making sure
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there's a proper root of law, democratic systems, a free press, property rights. we will be making the argument in the g8. we need greater transparency about land ownership, greater transparency but companies and greater transparency about tax. these are all arguments britain will be pushing in the year ahead. >> can the prime minister confirm he is the first government for 30 years not to offer hard-pressed consumers a government-funded energy efficiency scheme following the closure of -- last week? >> the eco-scheme which is many times the size of the warm front scheme him a warm front helped 80,000 pounds a year, eco-could help up to 230,000 families a year. so it's a bigger potential at a better scheme. >> what assessment has the prime minister made of unemployment in my constituency?
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in particular what assessment has he made having more women in work ever before? >> the point the honorable gentleman makes is absolutely right. there are now more people employed in the private sector than ever before and are also more women employed in our country than ever before. when you look at the unemployment figures that have come out today, what is remarkable is that employment is up in almost every region and unemployment is down in almost every region. there's a huge amount more to do but clearly over 500,000 new jobs in the private sector last year, the fastest job creation rate since 1989, this i think shows we are on the right track. >> mark intricate. >> mr. speaker, does the prime minister believed that the council, -- [inaudible] should receive 12% cut in local government funding? will the prime minister look at
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this again and have a more fair deal? >> i want to say to the honorable gentleman is of course local government right across the board is facing a difficult funding settlement. i don't hide from that but the figures are as follows. the area per head in his constituency is 501 pounds, whereas in my constituent its 320 pounds. now, i completely accept that needs are greater in different parts of the country and that is why figures are different. but i think the figures speak for themselves. >> may i congratulate my right honorable friend on a landmark speech? demonstrating leadership of our country and leadership on europe. but can invite mike right honorable friend to agree with me on this issue, that it isn't simply the united kingdom which is seeking to renegotiate the trees, that is a serious
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imperative on those members of the eurozone who want to introduce this disaster single currency policy into europe which is cause economic chaos, they are the ones in need of figuring, not just us. >> i thank mike right honorable friend for what he says. the point he makes is correct that there is a big change taking place in europe because of the reforms necessary to deal with the single currency. that is why treaty changed and changing europe is coming. there's also already a big debate in britain about our role in europe. and i think politicians have a choice. you either want to walk towards adam schiff that choice and get a good deal for britain and make changes that will benefit all of your, or you stick your head in the sand as the party opposite sex and hope the whole thing will go away. >> why isn't the prime minister -- but he thinks his five year -- [laughter] spin is a very easy answer,
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which is the scottish nationalist in my view misguided me, wants to leave the united kingdom as it is. i will be arguing at a think right across the house, we will be arguing that scotland should stay in the united kingdom. what i want to see in europe is a changed your. then we asked the people. >> despite his busy morning i'm sure the prime minister will have seen today's report from the department of community and local government highlighting a huge savings that could be made from turning around the country's most troubled families such as the children -- equating to 32000 per family. may i ask him what he's doing to ensure that these lessons are put to good use by local authorities across the country? >> i think my honorable friend is making an important point i don't understand why people are trying to shut down what should be a cross party initiative to try and deal with the most troubled families in our
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country. there is one council that actually spent up to 20% of its budget on just 3% of its families. this is a problem affecting all local authorities right across the country and i very much commend the approach the communities secretary is taking to bring together local councils and work out how we can help these families solve their problems and thus reduce a major impact on taxpayers as well. >> the governments welfare bill will plunged 200,000 extra children into poverty, and children in places like liverpool are already suffering. yet the government wants to make the poor go away by redefining poverty. does the trend they really think he is going away with this? >> what i would say to the honorable lady is the introduction of universal credit is going to reduce the number of children living in relative income poverty by around 250,000. those are the figures, but on the issue of welfare we face a clear choice.
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given that in work benefits have gone up 20% over the last five years compared with just 10% increase in wages, we believe it's right that welfare benefits shouldn't continue to go up ahead of wages. and i know from what labour have done this week, great sound and fury voting against the bill saying it is wrong but completely refusing to reverse it. that is the complete policy vacuum we face on the party opposite. >> given the keen interest of the prime minister in single markets, would you look at mortgage lenders restricting work to a small number of larger firms and depriving local practices of the work which keeps -- [inaudible] >> i think he makes a very good point, my honorable friend, and i will look closely at this. we do want is a competitive market financial services. i think it's a major issue to get that mortgage market moving. there are good signs as the governor of the bank of england said last night that credit conditions are easing but we
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need to make sure they are easing for people are trying to buy the first flat and the first of i don't have a big deposit, but don't have a lot of help from the bank of mom and dad. we need to make sure we are on their side. >> mr. jack straw. >> thank you very much, mr. speaker. the prime minister justified these very large cuts in defense spending with 5000, who are being sucked right now but on the basis he had to face some difficult decisions on expenditure. but those decisions were made in 2010. the security risks facing this country is now much worse. as he himself has acknowledged and many of his own honorable friends here. given those threats, including -- an overwhelming case for looking again at the strategic defense review and assuring that our troops have the numbers needed to justify our defensive? >> i think the right honorable
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gentleman makes a save point to the point is they are every five years and so there will be option to look all over again. what i would say to him about the level of risk, and i made this point in my statement to the house on monday, is that the risks are changing but we still face the biggest risk from the afghanistan-pakistan area, but the proportion of the risks we face from the very has declined so we are able to use resources as we draw down in afghanistan to cope with the other risks that we face. but the overall point is absolutely that yes, we are going to have a smaller regular army, although the extra reserves will be at the overall level of our army hardly changes the size, but it would be better equipped, more capable, more mobile, more capable of dealing with the modern threats that we face. >> graham stuart. >> tournament. can i congratulate the prime minister on the speech on europe this morning, and -- mr. speaker, this premise has a history of going to bat for
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britain and the party opposite has a history of going in and surrendering. but can ask the prime minister is the difference between that site and decide. that side wants to deny them. >> i think my honorable friend makes a very important point. frankly, the british public have seen treaty after treaty introduced to this house passing powers from westminster to brussels. they've seen a huge change in the european union over the last 30 years. they see a big change taking place because of the euro zone and that is why i think it's right to resell our relationship with europe and then to trust the people. >> thank you, mr. speaker. [inaudible] recent revolutions show about the secretive series abuse of powers continues with involvement of the police and
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the security services. will be prime minister have an investigation into the scandal that has ruined, continues to run the lives of many hard-working men, women, and their families? >> the honorable member quite rightly raised the issue that i know the opposition will be racing today in the debate and let me say the blacklisting that occurred was a completely unacceptable project that i think the previous government was right to bring in legislation to make it unlawful. we've seen no evidence that the blacklisting regulations introduced are not doing their job and the company responsible was shut down in 2000. at me say this but i do welcome the openness and frankness that labour are using to look at something that went wrong while they were in office. >> thank you, mr. speaker. my right honorable friend insisted on live excellent principles, including democracy based on national -- and ever
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closer union. other member states wants to go ahead with more integration and are demanding it. last year on the fiscal compact they ignored a veto and went ahead irrespective of the rules of the european union. will my right honorable friend tell us what happened if by next spring they insist on going ahead with their own intended proposals, and what would he do in response? >> first of all can i think my honorable friend for what he said. i believe what is going to happen is that the euro zone countries do need to make changes to the european union, as i put in my speech this morning. they are changing the union to fix the currency. that is what the presidents report is about. that is what the reports about that it proposes quite wide-ranging treaty change. i think this frankly gives us the opportunity and the right to argue that for those countries that are not in the euro zone, and, frankly, i believe are never going to join the euro
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zone, that there are changes that we would like not just for ourselves but for a more open, competitive and flexible euro. so there is going to be change in your. the euro zone countries do need to make changes but we should not back off from pushing forward our agenda as well. >> is the prime minister aware that there can be nothing more gruesome than to see him headed out of austerity room britain to whine and i am doubtful with 50 top bankers who helped to create the economic angst? several hundred tax avoidance millionaires. doesn't it prove the theory that if you want -- [shouting] >> i seem to member lunch i ran
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into the leader of opposition but we will leave that. to be fair to the honorable gentleman i think when he sees the speech that i'm going to be making, which will be arguing we need greater transparency overtax, we need greater responsibility over the tax avoidance and tax evasion issues. we need greater transparency about companies and about the land issue. he may even find their are some of the things i'm going to say he might agree with. >> all, he didn't like that. >> will the prime minister cut through the irrelevant arguments come from the other side of the house and give a very simple message to british people, that if we have a conservative government after the next election they will have their say in the referendum on europe if we don't have a conservative government, we won't have -- [inaudible] >> my honorable friend makes a good point. i believe it's right to resettle our relationship with europe, to make a more open, more
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competitive, more flexible, to make us a more comfortable inside that union and then to give the british people the in out referendum they deserve. >> thank you, mr. speaker. canada prime minister confirmed that 3.4 million families with someone who is disabled will be worse off as a result of his benefit of operating can't go twice in making life more difficult for these families? >> well first of all i would say to the honorable lady the allowance is not included in the cabin disability living allowance is not related to people income. it is related to people's needs. if you look as a whole at what we're doing with disability living allowance in the pit payment, overall the amount of money were spent on disability is going to go up and not down. >> my right honorable friend's admiration for the economic and political wisdom of our noble friend lord, is well-known. in the light of his speech this